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1967 Views 4 Replies Last post: Dec 21, 2013 8:39 PM by RSS
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Dec 14, 2013 10:27 PM

Working on beetle diversity

A friend of mine is working on a report about the affect of opencast mining on bio-diversity, and the biggest piece of data is a thorough beetle comparison.


Since I did Maths at uni a long time ago, he's come to me to assess the relative beetle biodiversity of his different samples.


I've googled it and found a paper by Leinster and Cobbold ('Measuring diversity: the importance of species similarity') that tells me the Maths that I need.


My problem is that it wants a number between 0 and 1 to indicate how similar each pair of beetle species are to each other (1= the same, 0 = totally different).


I have got the family name of all 84 species, and have got as far as guessing 0.7 when the two species are in the same family, and 0.3 if they are in a different family.


BUT - and this is where I get to the question - I'd like to factor in basic things like what they eat, how big they are, what the larvae eat.


Is there an internet site that will let me look up this kind of stuff about any UK beetle in a standardised way?  


I have an insect book, but it hasn't got them all in - I had no idea that there were so many sorts of beetle in the UK!



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    Re: Working on beetle diversity



    That sounds an interesting project, I have found this website useful, although it may not have all the species you are looking at



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        Dec 18, 2013 11:17 AM (in response to
        Re: Working on beetle diversity

        There's the UK checklist of beetle species here:

        To my knowledge it was comprehensive as of 2012 and that'll give you sub-family, tribe, sub-tribe and even sub-genus classifications where appropriate.


        But with thousands of species of beetle in the UK, many of which are poorly known, we don't really have an idea of the ecological niche for most species beyond the habitats and sometimes the plants where they tend to be found.

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